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Best home electric car chargers 2022: how to choose the right EV wallbox

If you're buying an electric or plug-in hybrid car and you have a driveway or off-street parking adjacent to your property, then you'll want a home EV charger to top up its battery

BP pulse charger

Before buying your first electric or plug-in hybrid (PHEV) car, you'll need to think about where and how you're going to charge it. Yet even if you live in a flat or house without a driveway, there are plenty of on-street charging solutions for you.

But, for drivers with off-street parking, such as a driveway or garage, the best solution is usually to charge at home from a wallbox. The UK's public charging network is growing quickly, but even as the UK government provides extra funding for charging posts, most experts think home charging is likely to remain dominant in the short to medium term.

Of course, electric cars need to be charged to keep moving, but PHEVs can run solely on their engine should their batteries run flat. However, in order to make the most of their batteries and return the best fuel economy possible, you’ll need to plug those in regularly, too.

Although with so many companies offering home electric-car chargers, it can be difficult to know which to choose. We’re here to help, backed up by the results of the annual Driver Power customer satisfaction survey; we asked EV and PHEV owners who’ve already taken the plunge to share their experiences, revealing which home chargers are best.

Best home electric-car chargers 2022

1. Hypervolt - 92.32%

It was a landslide victory for Hypervolt, after taking the first place in seven out of the nine categories in the 2022 Driver Power survey. According to those who responded, the installation process couldn’t be simpler and the physical units look great and are very well built. Customer service impressed owners, too, who also said that the smartphone app for the chargers is easy to use.

Installation process1st place
Style1st place
Charging speed1st place
Ease of use2nd place
Build quality1st place
Reliability1st place
Customer service1st place
Smartphone app1st place
Cost of charging11th place

2. Zappi - 89.36%

Winner of our Best Home Charger award last year, Zappi may have missed out on the top spot in this year’s survey, but it still received a respectable set of scores across the board. The wallbox from British firm myenergi was ranked second best for build quality, charging speed and customer service. Zappi also performs well when it comes to reliability and the ease of installation.

Installation process3rd place
Style3rd place
Charging speed2nd place
Ease of use6th place
Build quality2nd place
Reliability3rd place
Customer service2nd place
Smartphone app2nd place
Cost of charging5th place

3. Andersen – 87.40%

Andersen’s chargers are some of the most expensive on the market, but that’s not too surprising considering it’s Porsche’s recommended charging-point provider. They’re also some of the most stylish chargers you can buy, according to owners, who were equally pleased with the ease of use and build quality. Some owners weren’t best pleased with the speeds their chargers were providing, but otherwise there were few complaints to go around.

Installation process6th place
Style2nd place
Charging speed9th place
Ease of use3rd place
Build quality3rd place
Reliability6th place
Customer service5th place
Smartphone app3rd place
Cost of charging3rd place

4. Pod Point – 86.42%

Pod Point is widely known in electric-car circles thanks to its numerous public charging posts, which you’ve likely seen in supermarket car parks. Its wallboxes are also highly rated, and for ease of use came out top in the rankings. While not particularly stylish, owners found the units to be particularly reliable, coming second in this category. The build quality and customer service could be improved judging by the scoring, however.

Installation process4th place
Style6th place
Charging speed5th place
Ease of use1st place
Build quality6th place
Reliability2nd place
Customer service7th place
Smartphone app5th place
Cost of charging8th place

5. Ohme – 86.18%

Rounding out the top five this year is Ohme, whose overall score was just behind Pod Point’s. You said Ohme’s installation process is straightforward and easy, and owners say the chargers themselves are well built and reliable, too. The company’s customer service is also pretty good, though Ohme came in 10th place in the cost of charging category; owners think prices are too high for what they’re getting.

Installation process2nd place
Style8th place
Charging speed4th place
Ease of use7th place
Build quality5th place
Reliability5th place
Customer service4th place
Smartphone app6th place
Cost of charging10th place

6. EVBox – 85.30%

You may not have heard of Dutch firm EVBox, but the company and its chargers were given a solid set of scores in this year’s survey. EVBox’s customer service and smartphone app received the majority of the praise, and the installation of the charger itself didn’t throw up any issues. Overall, respondents weren’t the most satisfied with their ownership experience, but weren’t unhappy, either.

Installation process5th place
Style5th place
Charging speed6th place
Ease of use9th place
Build quality9th place
Reliability8th place
Customer service3rd place
Smartphone app4th place
Cost of charging9th place

7. Wallbox – 83.70%

Coming in seventh place is Wallbox, whose owners were pleased with the ease of use, build quality and reliability of their units – all of which were highlighted in their feedback. However, they also said the chargers weren’t the most stylish, and that the company’s customer service and the accompanying app could be better, too.

Installation process7th place
Style10th place
Charging speed10th place
Ease of use5th place
Build quality4th place
Reliability4th place
Customer service8th place
Smartphone app8th place
Cost of charging2nd place

8. EO – 82.67%

Not far behind Wallbox, EO received mostly unexceptional rankings, coming in seventh for reliability, charging speeds and build quality. Seeing as the highest score was fourth place for style, there doesn’t appear to be much EO owners want to shout about. The app came under heavy fire from owners and landed in last position as result, so hopefully that’s one area the company will improve very soon, for new and existing customers alike.

Installation process9th place
Style4th place
Charging speed7th place
Ease of use10th place
Build quality7th place
Reliability7th place
Customer service6th place
Smartphone app11th place
Cost of charging9th place

9. Rolec – 81.15%

Like the previous year, Rolec had a mix of scores in the Driver Power survey, coming in third and fourth place for charging speed and ease of use respectively. However, the company came stone dead last for customer service, with owners also unhappy with the ease of installation and reliability of their units.

Installation process10th place
Style7th place
Charging speed3rd place
Ease of use4th place
Build quality8th place
Reliability10th place
Customer service11th place
Smartphone app9th place
Cost of charging6th place

10. BP Pulse – 80.82%

BP Pulse operates one of the UK’s largest public charging networks, so you’d expect at least respectable results from its home chargers. Unfortunately, owners who responded have experienced poor customer service and said the smartphone app for the units needs work. They added the chargers themselves are unattractive and feel flimsy, with charging speeds and user-friendliness also in need of improving.

Installation process9th place
Style4th place
Charging speed7th place
Ease of use10th place
Build quality7th place
Reliability7th place
Customer service6th place
Smartphone app11th place
Cost of charging7th place

11. Tesla – 77.53%

The Tesla Supercharger network may be highly regarded as the best-of-the-best when it comes to ultra-rapid public top ups. However, the brand’s own home wallbox has clearly left many owners disappointed, coming last in six out of nine categories. Those results may come as a shock to some, but according to owners, the Tesla Wall Connector is complex to install, unattractive to look at, slow to charge, hard to use, and not all that reliable.

Installation process11th place
Style11th place
Charging speed11th place
Ease of use11th place
Build quality11th place
Reliability11th place
Customer service9th place
Smartphone app7th place
Cost of charging1st place

How do I charge an electric car at home?

So, how do you charge an electric car at home? A regular three-pin plug will draw a maximum charge of 3kW, which is too slow to fully charge most electric cars in a useful amount of time, even if left overnight. However, installing an EV wallbox charger at home will bring down charging times, making electric-car ownership considerably more viable.

What is a home wallbox charger?

A home wallbox charger is a unit that’s installed either in your garage or outside your house – whichever is nearer to where you park your car. This is connected to your home’s mains electricity and virtually all of these devices will charge your car at a faster rate than and more safely than can be achieved using a normal three-pin plug.

There are various other benefits: you don’t need to run an extension cord from your home, which could be hazardous; wallboxes are weatherproof, so they can be used in all conditions; some units are also ‘smart’ and can be controlled remotely with an app on your phone.

What types of home wallbox chargers are there?

There are dozens of different companies offering home wallbox chargers. The factors you’ll need to consider are price, ease of installation, charging speed, connector and cable type, compatibility with your home and even how the wallbox looks. In 2014, the European Commission ruled that all public charging points should feature Type 2 connector compatibility. This is why new electric cars and PHEVs often feature Type 2 plugs and cables – and why most home wallbox chargers are also intended for vehicles with Type 2 cables.

It’s also worth noting that some manufacturers have partnerships with a certain wallbox supplier, so it’s worth checking if they can fit one at your home for a discounted price as part of the deal.

You then choose whether you want a tethered or untethered wallbox. A tethered point means the wallbox comes with the charging cable attached, which plugs straight into your car. While some argue this isn’t as futureproof as a socketed wallbox, there's always the possibility of purchasing an adaptor later on.

An untethered wallbox comes with a standard plug, into which you have to run your own cable. These are often supplied with the car, but if not, can be bought from suppliers such as Chargemaster for around £150. However, the benefit is that if you swap cars or new charging technology comes along, the only thing you need to change is the cable.

What speeds do they charge at?

The most basic home chargers typically start at 3 to 3.7kW, with more advanced units delivering 7kW and the priciest units achieving as much as 22kW. Naturally, the price of the chargers goes up as you move through the power bands. A 3.7kW wallbox will fully charge the 40kWh battery in a standard Nissan Leaf in around 13 hours – giving you 168 miles of range overnight – while a 7kW system will do so in less than six hours. A 22kW charger would take less than two hours.

Think about your daily mileage and driving requirements. If you drive only a limited amount each day, bringing the car back with a healthy amount of battery remaining, you perhaps only need a 3.6kW charger to slowly recharge the vehicle overnight. If you do a lot of driving, often arriving home with little charge left, and you need to use your car regularly throughout the week and at weekends, then a faster charger may be a better option. A more powerful charger may also future-proof you if you’re likely to buy an EV with a large battery in the coming years.

It’s worth noting that the maximum charging speed your house can deliver depends on the type of electricity supply it receives: most UK households have what’s known as a ‘single-phase’ connection, while larger buildings and factories tend to have more powerful ‘three-phase’ connections. Consult an electrician to advise on what to expect from your home, in case you end up buying a high-power wallbox that you realise you can't make full use of.

What is the OZEV grant?

Some wallboxes qualify for the Office for Zero Emissions Vehicles' (OZEV) Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS), although this is no longer available for most homeowners from April 2022. This grant is a Government subsidy to reduce the cost of home wallbox installation, covering up to 75% of the purchase price, with a maximum contribution of £350. It shouldn't be confused with the Plug-in Car Grant (PiCG), which offers savings on the purchase of the electric car itself.

To be eligible for the OZEV grant, you need to meet the following points:

  • You have dedicated off-street parking

  • Your plug-in vehicle was purchased after 1 October 2016

  • You have not already claimed the grant for your vehicle

  • By claiming the grant, you're not exceeding the limit of two OZEV-funded charge points per house

From July 2019, the criteria for the grant was updated to insist that eligible chargers must be ‘smart’: this means being able to connect to the internet to be operated remotely – using a smartphone, for instance – so that charging times can be scheduled. A list of approved models and installers is provided on the Government's website. This is useful for two reasons: firstly, it can help prevent peaks in electricity demand, which could put a strain on local infrastructure, and secondly it'll help you charge when demand is lowest (usually overnight), saving you money.

Note that the OZEV grant essentially ended for single-occupancy homeowners as of 31 March 2022. It's still be open to electric-car drivers in rented accommodation, including both houses and apartments, but there can be additional complications getting a charging point installed in these circumstances.

How long does it take to install a wallbox?

Most charging-point providers will supply and install the home wallbox within a week, however periods of high demand may mean it takes longer to book a slot. Many providers include the installation cost in the purchase price, with the installation done by a qualified technician.

However, this isn’t always the case. Certain special circumstances may mean you’ll be charged extra for the installation, but this is unlikely. One company says that 90% of customers have their home wallbox installed free of charge, but as electric cars become the norm, this proportion is likely to gradually decrease.

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